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Ride for diabetes cure today in Scotsburn

Published on August 11, 2017

Tara, left, and Erica Sutherland know what it is like to live with diabetes. Tara is currently taking part in a diabetes research study while Erica was diagnosed with the disease more than 10 years ago. Their mother Leah is organizing the JDRF Ride for a Cure event Saturday in Scotsburn to raise money and awareness.

There will be rumble on the roads through Scotsburn this weekend.

The Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund Ride for a Cure will take place Saturday at the Scotsburn Fire Hall and will include rides for motorcycles and bicycles followed by music, barbecue and raffle draws. Registration begins at 10 a.m. and the kickstands go up at 11 a.m.

This is the third year Leah Sutherland has hosted the ride and she hopes this will be the largest one yet. Since she is a motorcycle enthusiast she saw it as a great opportunity to attract these riders to the event.

She has partnered this year with Pictou County Cycle, which will be organizing the cycling portion of Ride for a Cure. It costs $20 to register for the event, but if people collected pledges, the registration fee will be waived.

Last year, the Ride for a Cure raised $5,000 so she has set the goal a little higher, at $8,000 this year. It will go ahead, rain or shine.

The motorcyclists will leave the fire hall and head toward West Branch and make a stop in River John before returning to the fire hall via the Sunrise trail.

The route for the cyclists will depend on who shows up for the event, said Clint Snell of Pictou County Cycle. He said he originally thought cyclists would travel to Lyons Brook and then return to the fire hall, but he said if people have mountain bikes or if there are small children registered, the route or routes can be adjusted to fill everyone’s needs.

Sutherland said finding a cure for diabetes is something close to her heart since her daughter Erica was diagnosed at age 10 with the disease after contracting a virus.

Her other daughter, Tara, is currently taking part in a trial net study at the Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto after she has been identified as a carrier of antibodies that could lead to her becoming diabetic. She currently has four out of the five markers and if she reaches five, will be diabetic, Sutherland said.

She said JDRF flies 18-year-old Tara and herself to Toronto every three months for testing and she is participating in drug trials as part of the research project. 

“I feel like I am on both sides of the coin,” she said. “I have a child with diabetes and another in research trying to find a cure.”